The advice is out there — everywhere you look, experts are saying you need to “niche down” to stand out.
Do Jan and Olly agree? And what exactly is niching down?
Let’s find out.
What is a niche?
According to the Oxford Dictionary, a niche is “a specialized segment of the market for a particular kind of product or service.”
Of course, there are degrees of niche. The Language industry is a vast niche, and within it, there are smaller categories such as French, English or Spanish.
Still, each of those categories is far too broad for you to attract an audience when you’re just starting out. So, to gain traction for your business, you need to have a speciality that allows you to stand out to people who are longing for someone with your unique set of skills.
Go two layers deep
“When you don’t have a niche, it’s very difficult to connect directly with the right people.”
There are thousands of language sites on the web these days, so why should people choose you? The equation looks like this:
Your personality + unique angle & skills = your business niche
Yes, people will warm to your personality and brand, but you need to add an extra layer when you’re trying to gain traction.
True, you’ll be working in a smaller market, but the difference is your audience will be highly engaged because your product is precisely what they’ve been looking for.
Don’t pick a niche, create one is so narrow, that’s you’re automatically the number one go-to person in that niche.
Langpreneurs who niched down include…
Katie Harris (Episode #7) teaches English in a crowded market but niched down into offering Language Retreats for newly-retired Baby Boomers, interested in Languages and looking for an alternative travel experience.
Tamara Marie (Episode #49) combines her love of Spanish, salsa dancing and music to invite keen salsa lovers into her Spanish learning membership programme.
John and Ash from Outlier Linguistics (Episode #58) took the product-first route, created a much-desired Chinese characters etymology dictionary and then built a grateful audience.
And, of course, Jan van der Aa (Episode #34) has built Langpreneur into a small, but mighty business by combining his language education and business/marketing skills to offer coaching, events and advice, to an engaged audience of Langpreneurs.
“If you’re running an online business and you’re not getting traction, you need to niche down because there is so much competition… The only way to stand out is by creating good content for a very specific group of people.”
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